“I don’t think I’ve ever seen people work better together than on this project,” said Supervisor Trish Eager.

Even the few members of the public who discussed reservations with the project were careful to praise Burns for his responsiveness to their concerns. Burns, in turn, thanked his neighbors for their cordiality during the process.

Fluvanna Self Storage, at Burns Plaza on Lake Monticello Road, has been so successful that the company has run out of space to rent to customers, Burns said. He requested supervisors to rezone from agricultural to business a 13.4-acre parcel of land a little over a mile down Lake Monticello Road so that his company could expand.

Phases one and two of the project will include only self-storage use, said Steve Tugwell, senior planner. Phase three calls for a commercial retail center fronting on Lake Monticello Road. But Burns said that he anticipated the implementation of phase two to be 15 or 20 years away, if ever.

Steve Carney, Chris Perez, and Jim Higginbotham raised concerns about the proximity of the storage units to nearby homes in Lake Monticello. After discussing the impact of the development on the view from his back deck, Carney expressed dismay that Burns’ plans call for a dry pond dam 50 feet from his property line.

Chris Fairchild and David Rafaly spoke well of Burns and his father, Carlos P. Burns, who they said have cared for the community for many years. Rafaly said allowing existing businesses to grow and thrive gives the county “more bang for the buck” than tracking down new businesses to bring to Fluvanna. “It’s obviously meeting a need of the citizens,” he said, or the business wouldn’t need more space.

Supervisor Don Weaver asked what Burns was doing to screen the new units from the view of the neighbors. Burns said that he intends to trim some of the upper canopy of trees to allow for the growth of evergreens he will plant. He also said that there will be no lights on the side of units closest to the homes.

“We’ve made a good faith effort to meet the needs of our neighbors,” said Burns, saying that his plan includes several adjustments springing from community feedback.

Supervisors unanimously approved the rezoning.

The Board also passed a resolution recognizing the historic standing of the Town of Columbia and the dedication of its mayors and council members. Residents of Columbia voted last March to repeal the town charter established in 1788.

The resolution, read by County Administrator Steve Nichols, recognized the importance of the town to Fluvanna through the years. It also honored “the leadership, commitment and dedication of the most recent mayor and town councilmembers of Columbia, and their many predecessors, who for over more than 200 years served the citizens of the Town of Columbia well and faithfully.”

“I just want to thank everyone…that’s involved with the town for their dedication to the town…and for all their work planning and trying to get the town back up on its feet,” said Columbia’s last mayor, John Hammond. “This turned out to be the right decision [to dissolve the town]. It was a sad decision.”

In other matters:

Supervisors approved a special use permit sought by the St. Nicholas Learning Center of St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church on Rt. 53 near Lake Monticello. The permit allows for the establishment of a year-round school for up to 150 children aged 2 through 6 years.

Supervisors appointed Mark Dunning as a Fluvanna citizen representative to the James River Water Authority. Dunning takes over for Erick Gomez, who resigned, with a term that expires in April 2017.

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